Engineers prepare for light-skills combat

| November 5, 2010 | 0 Comments

2nd Lt. Brigida Sanchez
65th Engineer Battalion, 130th Eng. Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command

Soldiers from the 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC, review their mission at East Range, Schofield Barracks. (Staff Sgt. James Sterling | 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC)SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — For Soldiers of the 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Battalion, 130th Eng. Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, training means everything, and they recently conducted a platoon-level situational training exercise, at East Range, here, which focused on preparing themselves for light combat. 

This training was integral to train Soldiers on the possible changes in the company’s area of responsibility for their next deployment. The exercise reinforced tasks previously used downrange, introduced essential tasks for future missions and increased cohesion within the company. 

“Because we are a route clearance and combat unit, being in the field as much as we can definitely sharpens our edge,” said Spc. Devin Sanders, 4th Platoon, 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde. “The days that we get the chance to do that, builds more confidence and moral for the unit.” 

Capt. Casey Jones, executive officer, 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., explained why it was important for the company to train on unfamiliar tasks. 

“We incorporated missions as if we were in Afghanistan or Indonesia, training on the light skills rather than the mounted skills that we used while we were deployed in Iraq, using more of a light Sapper/Ranger type of training,” Jones said.

Exercises such as dismounted and night patrol, deploying command posts and small unit leadership tasks were the focus of the platoon STX training. 

Staff Sgt. Jose Rodriguez, squad leader, 4th Platoon, 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., worked to ensure his Soldiers fully comprehended their mission essential task list, or METL. 

1st Lt. Christopher Davis, platoon leader, 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC, reviews movements with his platoon on an improvised sand table at East Range during the brigade’s STX. (Staff Sgt. James Sterling | 95th Eng. Co., 65th Eng. Bn., 130th Eng. Bde., 8th TSC)“My Soldiers had a good grasp on the tasks, on what they were given,” he said. “It was the physical part of the training that was difficult because we had new Soldiers. We needed to get them trained up in foot marching with a full pack of around 65 pounds; carrying their weapon, plus the ammo for their weapon; their tripod; and (the) traversing and elevating mechanism.”  

As time passes and the 95th Eng. Co. continues to “train as they fight,” its new Soldiers will continue to build the endurance for physical challenges, train until new tasks develop into muscle memory and certainty, and have confidence that their leaders will give them the increased capacity to tackle any obstacle they may encounter while deployed in the future. 

Category: Exercises, News

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